PlayStation 2 RGB

Started by RARusk, March 28, 2005, 04:06:12 PM

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For a long time I have had to use a sync chip to get the sync from my PS2 when I wanted to use RGB from it. And I've had to fight around the MacroVision copy protection when I wanted to watch movies in RGB. And I've had to use a Sync-On-Green monitor when I wanted to use the Progressive Scan feature on "Soul Caliber II" (with a homebrew adapter to connect the DB-15 monitor connector to the 3 RCA jacks at the end of Sony's Component Video cable).

I also have two PlayStation 2's. The first one sat disused after a failed hack fix and I use the second one, unmodded, for my games. Now, after a year of letting it sit around, I've decided to get the first one up and running again. And I intend to find all of the necessary RGB signals off of the motherboard and get around MacroVision, Sync-On-Green, and sync chips.

I fragged the silver cable that connects the Reset/Drive Door buttons to the motherboard during an attempt to repair an RGB hack within the PS2. My first priority was to get around the silver ribbon cable problem. I solved that by removing the plugs for the cable and soldered regular, but thin, wires to both ends. Once I got the PS2 to power up, I put epoxy over the soldered areas to permanently secure the wires.

My ultimate goal is to trick out VGA for everything, without a modchip, for this PS2. But of course, I needed to find the necessary signals. And the only way to do that is off the motherboard. The next few posts will show you where I found the necessary signals and my preliminary findings on them.
Console hacking is like sex. For best results you got to know where to poke.....


The first picture attachment shows the underneath of the motherboard roughly an inch from the AV plug. I used my MultiSync 3D monitor to help determine where the signals are. The three sync signals are fairly close together.

I found that I have no problems playing PS1 games, PS2 games, and DVDs using the Horizontal and Vertical Syncs on the MultiSync 3D. However, when using the Composite Sync on my 1084 I found that the Composite Sync gets messed up when I play a DVD but is fine for PS1 and PS2 games. It seems when the Horizontal and Vertical Syncs are mixed for Composite Sync something else gets into the mix when a DVD is involved.

The contacts are too tiny for traditional soldering so I had to come up with something else. I first coated a large area with a clear insulating coating. Then I carefully used a pin vice (a mini drill used for hobbies) and drilled through the coating to expose the contact I wanted to use. Then I used this CircuitWriter stuff, which is a silver based conductive polymer, over the contact. Once I verified that I could get the signal through the stuff, I then placed a thin 30-gauge wire over the contact and layered some more CircuitWriter over the wire and what I had placed previously. The stuff dries pretty quickly so I did not have to wait long to do anything else. Once I verified that I was getting the signal, I put epoxy over the area to secure everything.

Because the Horizontal and Vertical Syncs are very close together it is best to get one signal from the bottom and the other from the top.
Console hacking is like sex. For best results you got to know where to poke.....


The next attached image shows the same points from the top of the motherboard. The chip to the right and the gray and black unit in the middle serve as landmarks to finding the signals.

Because there are several motherboard revisions I cannot guantee that the signals would be in the same place on each one. Mine is a standard 30001 unit and I know that are several revisions withn that class of units.
Console hacking is like sex. For best results you got to know where to poke.....


Once I found the sync signals I then turned my attention to finding the RGB signals themselves.

I found them not far from the Graphics Synthisizer chip. I managed to solder 30-gauge wire to all three resistor units (has to be on the right side) shown in the attached picture. However, the GS chip happens to be in the way so I had to carefully bend the wires at a 90-degree angle before soldering.
Console hacking is like sex. For best results you got to know where to poke.....


Once I set everything up I did some tests using my MultiSync 3D using a variety of DVD's and games.

I noticed I was getting some wavy interference similar to what I was getting with my Xbox some time ago. I fixed that by putting a piece of ferrite on the +5VDC line I was using for my sync chip but I have not figured out where the interference is coming from on my PS2 and how to fix it yet. However, I decided to go ahead with my tests anyway. Also the RGB signals are a little weaker than what you normally get from the AV plug but are much stronger than I though they were going to be. On some monitors amplification may not be neccessary but I will probably try to amplify it for my MultiSync 3D.

I used "The Matrix", "Godzilla 2000", "Red vs. Blue (Season One)", and "Red Dwarf I" for my DVD tests. I knew that "The Matrix" and "Godzilla 2000" was MacroVision encoded so I used them first. I had absolutely no problems running all of the discs in RGB. I get the the RGB and sync signals before MacroVision and composite sync is introduced so I get no interference (outside of the wavy interference I am currently encountering). I also bypass the Component Video forceback feature when DVDs are played.

For my games I used "DOA: Hardcore" (PS2) and "Grand Theft Auto 2" (PS1). I had no problems there either. Both games ran fine and looked good.

My final test was using the Progressive Scan feature in "Soul Caliber II". It came up with no problems and looked very good. While it was running I switched monitors and put it on a Compaq monitor that comes up with a green tint when Composite Sync is on the green line. It looked awesome. No problems whatsoever. By tapping into the RGB lines near the GS chip you get the signal before Composite Sync is mixed in so there will no longer be any green tint problems on monitors that cannot handle SOG.

Sorry if I wrote a lot here but I wanted to share my findings to those here who may be interested in hacking up their PS2 in a similar fashion. Certainly this info may be of particular interest to PS2/Linux developers since they have to use SOG monitors and this may allow them to get around that.

Unfortunately, my clock appears to be frozen and I have yet to get it unfrozen. I would very much like to get it unfrozen so I can fully use my PS2 again. I also need to get rid of my interference problem so any help there would be appreciated. Of course, I still need to try to trick out VGA but I need to check out the O2Mod to see if I can find out where they put the chip on the motherboard and start there.
Console hacking is like sex. For best results you got to know where to poke.....


Excellent series of posts, thanks for that.

What model PS2 did you use for the mod and pics?  Since there's significant difference (I hear) between models it'd help to know before cracking it open if the goodies are going to be there or not...


I know it is a 30001 unit but I don't know what motherboard revision it is. I will have to look that up tomorrow because it is nearly 2 AM where I am coming from and I need to go to bed.

I would also imagine that you could use the same methods to find RGB and sync signals off of regular PS1 motherboards. I may try to do the same with my PS1 unit in the future.

I just recently visited and downloaded some stuff. I hope to use that info to figure where I should poke around next.
Console hacking is like sex. For best results you got to know where to poke.....


Based on the information on the page listed below I believe my motherboard is a Version 4.

I  also cannot verify the Component Video Forceback bypass on this unit. The initial RGB hack I did to this unit damaged the video chip's ability to go between RGB and Component Video. However, I strongly feel that I have gotten around this problem because I am tapping into the signal way before it goes to the video chip. In addition, trying to fix the traces near the area may be what is causing the clock freeze problem. I may have to undo that to see if that will solve that problem. Also, the wavy interference problem was not there when I first started my hack work. I hope that it is not related to the Silver Polymer/Epoxy stuff I am doing to tap into the signals. That would be a real bitch to undo if that was the case.

All of Sony's video chips predicate themselves on using RGB as a base for creating all of the other video signals. The CXA-1145 that I like to use as an amplifier also creates Composite Video for standard TV usage using RGB as it's ingredients. The advanced video chip on the PS2's motherboard is no different although it also creates Component Video and switches between RGB and Component Video.

The CXA-1145 does a poor job at creating Composite Video and it was the bad C-Video signal coming from the Sega Master System (which used the 1145) that led me to mess around with the eight pin plug in the back and using a 1084 monitor years ago. This set me down the path to RGB experimentation and modification which I continue to follow today.  :)  
Console hacking is like sex. For best results you got to know where to poke.....


Somehow my wavy interference problem disappeared. It may have been that something was touching something that wasn't supposed to be touched. By moving my stuff around I managed to clear the problem. However, I did not have the drive attached (you can run the PS2 without the drive) so hopefully it is not the drive that caused the problem in the first place. I'll reattach the drive tomorrow and do some tests.

I got lots of pictures from and looked them over. I then soldered a wire to ground and started poking around the motherboard with the other end trying to see if I could trigger VGA mode. I got some weird shit poking some of the points between the main processor and the graphics chip but no VGA.

I also poked around the areas where the O2 chip would be hooked up. I still didn't find what I was looking for but found something just as important. By putting ground on one of the pins on one of the chips that the O2 chip attaches to I have managed to find a way to unfreeze the clock within this PS2. I have coated the nearby area with insulating coating and will let it sit overnight. Ground is just a few millimeters away so I will expose the pin then expose part of the nearby ground. Then I will use CircuitWriter to bridge the two contacts. If everything works, I will put epoxy over the new trace to protect it.
Console hacking is like sex. For best results you got to know where to poke.....



By what I see, in the pictures there are 3 outputs for RGB and 2 more for vertical/horitzontal syncro in PSX2 moderboard.
My monitor has R, G, B, HD & VD inputs in BNC type. So for the computer i use a 5BNC to VGA cable, with excelent result. Its a IBM PowerDisplay 20" of 1.995.

What you say is that you can use this 5 connections in the moderboard to get the best quality in the games. Can you explain me what kind of cable did you "make" or what cable are you using? sorry but my english dont let me understand all you say. What you explain is a modification for the using the RGB scart or are you connecing this 5 connections directly to your monitor by BNC or by the DB15 pins?

I thought the only way to connect PSX2 with a monitor in a GOOD quality was to use the Japanes RGB together with a XRGB-2 Plus for "upscaner" and XSelect-D4 D for "progresive".

Can you detail all the things you use? I have not clear that :(((

I willing to play in my monitor!!!


RARusk What happened to good old plain soldering? whats this silver polymer crap? and this circuitwriter? sounds dodgy to me..  


I tried soldering. It wouldn't stick. The contacts on the board are too small. I found the Circuitwriter/Epoxy method was a reasonable alternative and it works. The stuff conducts very well and I've had no problems.

My luck has been running out on my experiments. What I thought was a possible clock fix wasn't. I kept getting a black screen when I reset the machine after attaching the pin to ground. It turns out that you have to turn the machine on THEN ground the pin. If you leave it grounded then reset you get nowhere. So much for that.

All of the poking around I've done has been killing the motherboard. The sync remains stable when using separate sync from the motherboard but is completely messed up when using composite sync. I've destroyed something I believe and now the motherboard is dying. This is what I get for poking around where I shouldn't. And I didn't find a way to trick progressive scan from the unit either.  :(

Then when I tried to get to the link I posted earlier to find out what motherboard my second PS2 is, the link is down. This sucks.

With these developments what I am going to do is perform amplifier experiments on the RGB signal and learn all that I can from this motherboard. Then I will relegate it to the junk heap and carefully mod my second PS2 to get the RGB signals off of the motherboard and no more. I will save the DVD drive, power supply, and joypad ports as spare parts. I will also use the dying motherboard to practice soldering on these tiny contacts. Circuitwriter is nice but can be messy. I will still use a little epoxy to secure the soldered wire to insure it doesn't go anywhere.

I managed to hook up the CXA-1145 amplifier board I removed from my RGB box some time ago and tried it on this motherboard. The RGB signal became very strong and possibly too strong. I will need to find an amplifier that only amplifies a little bit. Maybe the amplifier that Lawrence posted in another topic can do the job.

I have two RGB monitors: the NEC MultiSync 3D and a Commodore 1084. When I mod my second PS2 I will only get the Vertical and Horizontal Syncs and leave the Composite Sync alone. I'll wire a second plug onto the PS2 so I can plug it to the MultiSync. If I need to use the 1084 I'll just use my regular RGB box with the EL1883 chip and plug it into the AV port.

When I got "Soul Caliber II" to run in Progressive Scan on the MultiSync I noticed that after I maxed out the screen width I had at least a half an inch of black area to either side of the monitor edge. When I switched out monitors the screen went all the way to the edge. Is there any way to do something to the horizontal sync so you can make the picture go all the way and then beyond the edge of the screen so you can make proper adjustments and not have vertical black bars on the screen edges?  
Console hacking is like sex. For best results you got to know where to poke.....


Despite the years of console hacking I still have lots to learn.

I went to Radio Shack to see about finding some solder flux so I can try to find a way to unclog the junction holes in the motherboard so I could stick a wire through and try to solder on the other side. However, I found none. But I found some lead-free solder that was specifically designed for electronic components. It was 94% tin and 6% silver. I decided to get this instead and try it.

I got the motherboard and found a group of junction holes. I picked one and scraped it until the metal was shiny. Then I put a small dot of this solder on the contact. Then I placed a piece of 30-gauge wire on the solder, after heating up the solder and melting it, and let it set for a couple of minutes. Afterwards I did a pull test. It held. Not only did it hold I did some twist tests and it was almost like I superglued the wire onto the board.

I was using standard 60/40 solder for years without any problem until I had to deal with these small contacts. Changing the solder made all the difference. It will make modifying my other PS2 much easier.

I plan to solder wire to all three sync signals, all three RGB signals, +5VDC, ground, a specific place near the video chip so I could disable Component Video, and audio. Then I will attach all of these wires to a plug that will be placed on the right side of the unit.

Then I could do all sorts of experiments outside of the PS2 unit and attach sidecar units that would contain amplifiers and neccessary plugs to connect to my monitors and sound units.

By the way Lawrence, I got the latest issue of Retro Gamer and read your interview inside. Good job dude!  :D
Console hacking is like sex. For best results you got to know where to poke.....


By the way, the above link to find out what version PS2 motherboard you have is working again and I discovered that my other PS2 is a Version 3. I hope everything is in the right places when I open it up later.....
Console hacking is like sex. For best results you got to know where to poke.....


I'm not really satisfied with the whole RetroGamer article.  The guy who wrote it contacted me mere days before he had to have it finished and asked me, basically, to write the whole thing for him.  I told him if he wanted me to write it we should discuss payment.  He tried to sweeten the deal by hyping up how much business it would bring me, and how it would generate more hits for the site.  

After telling him that basically I was popular enough thanks, he settled for an interview for which I was a little curt 'cause the guy had pissed me off with his inability to research his own article.   While the interview turned out about as well as could be expected, his choice of games to show off the system leaves a lot to be desired.  Isn't Strider, Ghouls n Ghosts or Super Street Fighter retro enough for him?  Bah, I say.

I do kinda wish I'd had time to give him more high res pics of the systems, but...  Bah, you can see those on my site.  =D


Interesting info on the solder, I'm gonna look into that.


D'ar! I feel your pain, Russ. Via soldering is the most terrible thing ever. I was working on a XBox xontroller mod (all points are vias :( ), and I ruined the connection between the sensor and the encoder chip by destroying the via connection through the board... on eight buttons. I fixed it, but it was a mess.

I've heard different ways of doing this, just for random info. Supposedly, putting just bit of liquid flux in the via and applying solder works pretty well. I, too, am intrigued by this solder. It would make things about 800% easier. Thanks for your research.


I think I'm gonna havre to buy that issue now. :D  


The article looked all right by me from my perspective. However, because of what you said Lawrence, it puts the article in a different perspective now. I'm a bit disappointed on how they treated you. They are still relatively new and have lots to learn (or maybe it's because they're British and that's how they do things I guess).

I'm going to continue practicing soldering onto these small contacts on the old motherboard with the new solder and do continuity tests. I want to make sure I am confident in doing work with these kind of contacts before I do work on the other PS2 unit. I also looked around for plugs I can use to put these wires onto and for the sidecar units I mentioned earlier. I found some that may be useful.

I opened up my Xbox and tried to see if I could do the same thing that I did to my PS2 which was to tap into the RGB signal from the motherboard. However, the Xbox does things quite differently and it is not possible to do the same thing. But I did find some interesting signals and I will do additional research.

One question: what's the best way to make Composite Sync from Horizontal and Vertical Syncs? When I get things squared away on the other PS2 unit I want to try making Composite Sync on my own for experimental purposes.

As for the solder, I don't know of any other places beside Radio Shack that has it. I didn't see it when I went to the other electronics places I visited today.
Console hacking is like sex. For best results you got to know where to poke.....


Lead free solder is a whole 'nother world. From limited experience, lead free solder and lead based solder do not like each other. If you're working on something that's built with lead free solder, ensure you keep anything that's been used for lead solder away from it.

Lead free also seems to require a higher temperature to work with.
[ Not an authoritive source of information. ]


Thanks for the info. I'll keep that in mind. I was using a brand new tip on my soldering iron when I did my initial tests and I will simply swap it out with another tip when using the regular solder.

Did a little more research on the Xbox. My unit has the Focus Enhancements video conversion chip. It takes digital RGB and digital Component Video signals and converts them into other signals and switches the signals to assigned pins. I can get a stable picture, which is unsable due to it's digital nature, from these input pins. But what I found is that these signals are natively progressive even when in the using the dashboard, playing movies, or certain 480i games like "Kung Fu Chaos". Very interesting. The hard part now is trying to see if there is anything that will take a digital progressive scan Component Video signal and convert it into a progressive scan RGB Analog signal using these signals off the Xbox motherboard. By using the Component Video on the Xbox I can have access to 720p resolution.

I still need to go back and practice soldering on the PS2 motherboard. But I may also poke around a little bit and see if it also has digital RGB signals as well. I'll need to Google around and see what I can dig up.

If you're wondering, I already did some digging at Focus Enhancements. I can't get the datasheet for the chip that is inside the Xbox. You have to go through some hoops and they probably won't give you a copy unless you want to buy a large quantity of the chips. No doubt MicroSoft had a lot to do with that. Bastards.
Console hacking is like sex. For best results you got to know where to poke.....


re: focus' chip, lie to them.  You're building a settop box made of a PC architecture and you're investigating chips.

re: converting digital component to something useful...  Maybe try hotwiring the GC component cable to the Xbox?  I haven't put even an ounce of effort into checking out compatibility, but that's what the chip in the Nintendo cable does.


"re: focus' chip, lie to them. You're building a settop box made of a PC architecture and you're investigating chips."

I thought about that but given MicroSoft's involvement they may ask to see such a setup first. Besides, I plan to make a topic covering these signals at and maybe somebody there has a datasheet they can share with me.

"re: converting digital component to something useful... Maybe try hotwiring the GC component cable to the Xbox? I haven't put even an ounce of effort into checking out compatibility, but that's what the chip in the Nintendo cable does."

I kind of remembered a topic concerning hacking the Nintendo GameCube cable to do RGB output. I should do some Googling to see what I can dig up. IF it can do what I hope it can do then the hard part is tracking down a Component Video cable for the GameCube. The only time I ever saw one was at a independent game store and they had to import it.

Took apart my Xbox tonight and hooked up a wire to one of the digital lines. I took some screen shots for use in the Xbox topic I mentioned earlier then put it back together again. Then I popped in "Spy vs. Spy" which I picked up today. Used to draw SvS cartoons when I was a kid and I loved the C-64 SvS games so it was natural I would go after this. Maybe tomorrow I will dick around with my PS2 some more.
Console hacking is like sex. For best results you got to know where to poke.....


Poked around a little bit on the motherboard to try to find the digital RGB signals. I believe I found them but they are interlaced scan.

Practiced a little bit with the new solder. I was using it with my iron at 15 watts before so I tried it out at 30 watts. The stuff behaved a little differently but I could still do what I needed to do. I chose two junction holes very close together similar to the two holes where the H-Sync and V-Sync are located. I scraped the two holes and managed to solder two 30-gauge wires to them. I checked to make sure that I didn't join the two wires with solder (I didn't). I did another pull test and really pulled and twisted the soldered wires. They didn't give at all. Man, I love this stuff.....

I also did my initial post on the progressive digital video signals at last night and I am going there now to see what the initial reactions are.
Console hacking is like sex. For best results you got to know where to poke.....


Hey RARusk, do you have any documentation (pinouts/datasheets) on the SC video chip and the CX video chip (used in later motherboards) ? I have a good idea where the points are by looking at your pictures but I'd rather confirm it by checking the pins on the actual chip, especially since the layout of the board I am working on is different.


I tried entering the chip names into Google and came up with zilch on the A3525BR and SC44728 chips. I had slightly better luck with the CXM4015 chip but no datasheet to speak of so far.

I am currently trying to finish up text that will make up the basis for a page within the GamesX Wiki that will show you where to tap into the necessary signals for RGB within the PS2. I redid the photos and even pointed out where the pins for the sync are on the SC44728. I even took a photo of where to get the sync within the 700xx unit. I hope to have that page up within the week.

I found that to unfreeze the clock you just have to play with it for awhile. Trying to get the numbers to change, switching between modes, that sort of thing. The amount of time it takes varies. Sometimes it takes a couple of minutes, other times it takes longer. One time it took me ten minutes after working on my new 70012 unit.

By the way, Retro Gamer magazine is no more. Even though the magazine was doing well the publisher was not. So when the publisher went down so did the magazine. Too bad. I liked it.

One more thing, I am going to try my hand using silver based solder paste that I got at Radio Shack. This stuff may be easier to use than trying to "paint" on solder then trying to solder the wire to the via (or what I was calling "junction hole" before I was told different by someone who makes his own Atari 7800 cartridge boards).
Console hacking is like sex. For best results you got to know where to poke.....


Just wanted to give a shout....

I love what you did.  It's very amazing considering your lack of rather professional soldering skills (and I'm not trying to bash you saying that.)

Some pointers on those little holes (vias as we call them in the electronics world...heh) - use a scratch brush or other edged tool.

A ps2 (as well as any other consumer electronics today) come pre-equipped with a "solder-mask" or laquer to prevent reverse engineering and modifications to be done (yes, you can't see it, but it's there.)  They sell kits at radioshack (i believe mine was yellow handled) of various 'tools' to help soldering.  The edge on one of those is made specifically for getting rid of solder masks.

After removing the solder mask, you'll want to use flux to create a chemical bond between the contact and the solder.  There are actually a few books under like 70 pages that teach you all these 'tricks', but if you're like me, you picked it up over time and read it all after the fact (and after a few dead ps2's.)

Precision soldering takes practice, but knowing how a board is built, traces laid, flux works, solder masks create headaches, etc - you're on your way to happy town....yes, happy town.

Quick question for me to ask since you fellows have been doing this longer than I - on a ps2 connector, does it work the same way as a psx connector concerning pulling RGB ( or is it necessary that I perform a 'hard wired' mod to my system.  I could really care less about watching movies on an RGB monitor - this is strictly for games.



also, the clock being stuck is caused by a disconnection of the battery, etc....

It's an easy fix - just go into your config and try screwing around with the clock options (or any option for that matter.)

You'll eventually hit something that will 'normalize' the rotations of the background and allow you to set your clock.

I was baffled the first time I saw this as well, but I've now fixed it countless times, etc.

edit - just saw where you said you fixed it...i'll just leave this here for posterity sake. :)


I'm still learning my way as far as professional soldering goes. I have still yet to try the solder paste I bought. My job has been wearing me down lately and I usually vent my frustration by playing San Andreas. I am still trying to finish the text for the page I am writing for the Wiki. I will try to do some more before going to work tomorrow.

I found that there is nothing inside the vias on the 70012 board so I could stick a wire straight through. No problem there.

The PS2 connector is exactly the same as the PS1 connector. The only difference is that the RGB pins are shared with the Component Video on the PS2 (Red = Chroma Red, Green = Luminance, Blue = Chroma Blue) and they can be switched within the System Configuration area.

If all you want to do is play games on it and not watch movies then you can just treat it like it was a PS1. Whatever you do to use RGB on the PS1 is what you would do with the PS2.
Console hacking is like sex. For best results you got to know where to poke.....


rock on

as for the vias - yeah, they are empty.  Generally they'll cross over to the other side of the board...of course, they come up under chips and have traces you can't see....or the trace just abrubtly stops - gotta love engineering when they decide something isn't needed so it just stops and since all the boards are already ordered, the trace stays on there...heh.

I was falling asleep last night when I wrote those messages, and thought of something while drifting off in bed (heh) - for the scratch brush tool set, there is a piece with a shallow conical type tip - that's what you want to use on vias.  You take that and basically apply the slightest amount of force (like you're writing with a pen or pencil) and circle the via.  It should remove the solder mask and your solder area is now at 2x the size it was and isn't such a bitch to work with anymore.

Well, off to the ole job...peace.


QuoteI was falling asleep last night when I wrote those messages, and thought of something while drifting off in bed (heh)
Not so strange that.

There was this one scientist who would sit in his chair holding metal balls. Dozing off to sleep the balls would fall and he would wake up with new ideas gained by the short time he was not awake. In other words he would be be enriched by the things his subconcious cooked up.


sweet...i must be a genius...or something...heh


Tonight I tried to create a page for my PS2 information in the GamesX Wiki. I added the link to the AV Mods page. However, when I hit save and it tried to open the AV Mods page it would go about 40% of the way and then stop and sit there.....and sit there.....and sit there. I waited for about ten minutes before I gave up. I will try again tomorrow to get this page up.

Yesterday I tried to get my Version 4 motherboard working again because I was trying to pin down a possible bug within the newly released Special Edition of San Andreas for PS2. On my Version 3 unit it was giving a timestamp of 03 Mar 2005 15:06:07 for all of my game saves. On my PSTwo it was timestamping correctly. So I needed to get the other board running for just five minutes so I could try something out and see if that board was timestamping correctly.

I never got that far. I resoldered the wires that connected the power supply to the board and hooked the drive back up. I also hooked up the ribbon cable for the controller and memory card device. I also connected up the monitor and sound.

Then I turned it on and the red light came on. But it went out after a couple of seconds. I went "Huh"? and just as I finished muttering that word.....POW!!!!!

The A3525BR video chip went out in a blaze of glory along with a couple of caps. I went "SHIT!!!" and then quickly began to unplug everything I could get my hands on. There was no damage to anything else thankfully. I have never had anything go out like that before. I wish I knew what I did to make that happen.

Anyway, the version 4 board went from partially fragged to totally fragged. I then cleaned up all of the gunk and extra wires so I could use it full time as a solder practice board.

Below is a picture of the now dead A3525BR video chip. You can clearly see a light colored splotch and distorted numbers where there is a nice little bulge caused by its internal combustion. Hell of a way to go out. R.I.P.
Console hacking is like sex. For best results you got to know where to poke.....


Huh? I thought I added the picture attachment correctly. Let's try again.....
Console hacking is like sex. For best results you got to know where to poke.....


Today, before going in to work, I finally got around to trying out the sliver based solder paste I got last week and tried it out on the now completely dead version 4 motherboard. I chose two vias real close together very similar to the sync contacts on the other side of the motherboard.

I scraped the via with an curved blade and then took the tip of another blade and very gently cleaned out the hole. Then I put in the 30-gauge wire and pushed it in until it stopped (because of the gunk). Then I bent the rest of the wire so I could tape it to the board.

Next I took just a very tiny bit of solder paste (which is solder flux paste with silver based solder granules mixed in) and put it where the wire and via met. The instructions said to put the soldering iron near but not on the paste. However, it wasn't working like that so I actually touched the paste with the iron. The flux, uh, fluxed and the solder granules flowed. There wasn't a lot of solder there but it was enough to cover the via and connect the wire to it. And it holds very good.

I repeated the process with the other wire and then did continuity testing to see if any solder connected the two wires. It did not. I also did it from the other end of the wires to the opposite side of the via to see if I could get a current. I did so I managed to solder two thin wires close together onto very small vias and got them to work correctly.

I now feel I have finally got the right tool (the solder paste) to do proper soldering on PS2 motherboards for future modifications. Now all I need is a SCPH-50001 unit.

Below is a picture of this soldering exercise. Close to the wires is what appears to be a surface mount resistor pack.
Console hacking is like sex. For best results you got to know where to poke.....



I need some help ^^'

I think that y've screwed up something by trying that.

When i now use the normal composite output, i just have green color.
and, if i try with a vga monitor, there is nothing.

What i've done :

I've soldered the 5 wire to a vga connector, tryed it, get it worked but, no blue
so i've resolder the collors wire. now i get nothing on vga and just green on composite :/

Is someone got a hint to how help me to find what suck ?


QuoteLead free solder is a whole 'nother world. From limited experience, lead free solder and lead based solder do not like each other. If you're working on something that's built with lead free solder, ensure you keep anything that's been used for lead solder away from it.

Lead free also seems to require a higher temperature to work with.
I belive lead solder was used on the all the PS2's. I am not compleatly sure but every mod I have done I have had great sucess with lead solder. I also know that a common choice of professionals is eutric solder. This is what I prefer to use. It is a mix of 63 percent tin and 37 percent lead. All the info given above is highly correct, too. The reason the solder wouln't stick is probably because you did not heat up the pad properly. Also it helps to apply a drop of new solder everytime you reheat it to make a new connection. Try using a soldering station set to a low temperture and linger on the pad a second or two instead of melting the solder and then removing the iron.


I am sorry the info I gave on eutric solder above was incorrect. It is 62 percent tin and 38 percent lead.


It has been awhile since I replied in my own topic.

For starters, I recently discovered that someone had uploaded a Service Manual for the SCPH-30000 units (discussed in this topic). Using the information I found in that I was able to do an RGB mod to another Version 4 motherboard with FAR more professional results.

I also found another way to properly solder wires to the vias.

First I get a 30-gauge wire. After stripping the insulation from the end I gently rub the exposed end on a file to kind of taper it. Then I put the wire in the via until it stops (usually about halfway through the motherboard).

Then I bend the wire down into the direction I want the wire to go. The next step is to use an X-Acto knife and gently expose some of the via. Then I put on a small amount of solder paste on the exposed wire and via. The solder paste is ground up silver based solder mixed with solder flux paste.

From there I grab a lighted magnifying glass in my right hand then I grab my soldering iron with my left hand and gently touch the paste with it while looking through the glass to better see what I am doing. The solder and paste begin to melt at that point and when I get just enough solder to cover some of the wire and via I stop with the iron.

I then use my knife to pick up some of the larger clumps of paste that did not melt. Then I get a Q-tip, douse it in alcohol, and clean up the immediate area. I check underneath the wire for paste and flux and clean underneath if necessary. Once the alcohol evaporates I use an old makeup brush and brush around the area. This cleans up any fine debris.

What's left is a very clean and professional solder joint. Then I coat the connection with clear liquid tape to protect it. No more of this CircuitWriter and Epoxy bullshit.

An example of my work is in the picture below.

When I did the mod I also took pictures of my work so I could update my PS2 page on the Wiki at a future date. However, I am in the middle of a couple of writing projects so I don't know exactly when I will be able to update that page but I hope it will be soon. I also need to ask a question concerning one of the RGB points on the motherboard before I can proceed.

I was also trying to see if the information in the manual would tell me if there was a way to trick out Progressive Scan off of the motherboard. However, there doesn't seem to be any clear indication one way or the other at this point. The only way to know for sure is to get the datasheets of the main PS2 chips (Emotion Engine and Graphics Synthesizer). Yeah, I know, good luck with that.

But the SCPH-30000 service manual is still a wonderful source of PS2 technical information. Now if only someone would upload a Service Manual for the SCPH-50000 and SCPH-70000 units I'll be all set.....
Console hacking is like sex. For best results you got to know where to poke.....


Damn it! :angry: I need to start rereading these topics from the beginning before responding. I just simply scrolled down to the latest posts instead of starting from the top. As a result my previous post is just repeating something I posted earlier many months ago. On the plus side I did give a better picture and provided some info from what I got from the service manual.  
Console hacking is like sex. For best results you got to know where to poke.....


Hey, finally, someone who is professional enough that he might be able to answer my big question. What would you say about this :

We get one of these :
then we get a gender-changer for that VGA-connector, and connect it to a monitor. I know it wont work with interlaced signal, but would it work with progressive-scan games ?